15 March 2018

Blessing & Remembrance Service

A Blessing and Remembrance service was held at Hatfield House today to open a Field of Remembrance, which is in place to mark the centenary of the 1918 Armistice. Rector Darren Collins and the Bishop of Hertford Michael Beasley conducted the service. Members of the Royal Navy, the Army, the RAF and the British Legion joined Lord and Lady Salisbury for this poignant occasion.

Over 200 children from six local schools joined the blessing, each planting a cross with a poppy affixed to it in the field. As shown in the accompanying photo the area has been established next to the North Front of Hatfield House, those who wish to join in an act of remembrance are invited to plant a cross in memory of a friend or family member, or to mark the Armistice more generally. The cost of a cross is £2.50 and the proceeds will be distributed between the Royal Navy, the Army, the RAF Benevolent Funds, and The Royal British Legion.

The design of the field itself is a four petal poppy; the outline of each petal is a walkway to enable visitors to go amongst the crosses that are planted.

Like every part of the United Kingdom, Hatfield lost many sons during the Great War and many more suffered its effects for the rest of their lives. Five of Prime Minister Salisbury’s grandsons were killed and 140 from the town of Hatfield and from the Hatfield Estate also lost their lives. To mark the end of the War in 1918, a solemn parade was held on the North Front of Hatfield House.

The field will remain in place in Hatfield Park until mid-November.

Blessing & Remembrance Service - Hatfield Park